Better Together: The Power of Community

Community Work Day- Fall 2022
It takes a village to raise a child, and it takes a community to raise a school. This past Sunday, we were blessed with an abundance of community as Parker families, faculty, and friends gathered together for our Community Work Day and 30th Anniversary Celebration event.
Community Work Day is an important event in the year of our school for one obvious reason: We get a LOT done! However, this day is also quite meaningful in the life of our school because it embodies and exemplifies the values we hold most dear: generations coming together in service, caring for each other and our world.
Children learn best not by listening to what we say but by watching what we do. In this way, Community Work Day provides a powerful opportunity for our adults to lead by example, showing our children how thoughtful and invested community members take care of shared space and each other. Watching our students work alongside their grown-ups, it is clear that they are brimming with pride and confidence. Sharing the responsibility of work shows our children that we trust them, that they are important, and that we care about the things that matter to them.
Community Work Day stands as a living example of Parker’s mission to nurture confidence and community and cultivate purposeful action. As such, it was also the perfect occasion to pay tribute to a community member who personified those values. Bill McLaughlin, a Parker founder, benefactor, and true friend, passed away this past summer at the age of 86.
At noon on our work day, we gathered at the pond that Bill envisioned and made a reality to honor his memory and legacy. Our Head of School, Jennifer Gresens, and Board members Margery Whiteman and Molly Mulligan shared personal recollections of Bill. He was remembered as a lifelong learner with a curiosity for the world that led him to always engage, ask questions, and learn more. Bill was a true strategic thinker who also lifted others’ voices by always inviting them to share what their vision was for Parker. He cared about people and his community, and was forever giving of his time and talents to enrich the lives of others.
Bill was the true embodiment of everything we hope for in our students, and his legacy lives on in the happiness of every student at Parker. We ended our day with immense gratitude for this opportunity to gather in Bill’s honor and do the work he did best — joining together to create an even more beautiful Parker.
We would also like extend a tremendous THANK YOU to Carol and Craig Turnbull for the donation of their delicious Bull & Basil truck pizza to our event!